AP Photo/Nick Wass

Rooney saves the day defensively, sets up DCU’s stoppage-time winner

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The game in 200 words (or less): Luciano Acosta was the man that scored the hat trick in D.C. United’s dramatic 3-2 win over Orlando City SC at Audi Field on Sunday, but his three goals will fade to an afterthought following Wayne Rooney‘s unbelievable stoppage-time heroics (watch below). United had failed, for more than 35 minutes, to capitalize on their man advantage following Cristian Higuita’s 55th-minute red card and a disappointing draw looked inevitable, but Rooney came through with the best play in the game the season league history to not only save the day on one end of the field, but to then win it on the other end. Now, two points are all that stand in the way of United getting out of the Eastern Conference cellar. Orlando City, on the other hand, couldn’t afford to throw away anymore points if they hope to qualify for the playoffs — for the first time in franchise history — in 2018. James O’Connor’s side certainly can’t afford to throw away anymore points due to self-inflicted wounds — say, for instance, dismissals for petulant conduct. Alas, such was reality for the Lions on Sunday.

[ VIDEO: USMNT’s Weah scores first Ligue 1 goal in goofy fashion ]

Three Four Five moments that mattered

45’+4 — Acosta beats Bendik at the near post for 1-0 — Rooney just sees and reacts to the game faster than anyone else on the field, and it shows most clearly during seemingly innocuous moments. Take, for instance, this simple, first-time lay-off to Acosta. No second touch required, just move the ball on as quickly as possible. Goal.

55′ — Higuita sees red for throwing an elbow — Higuita didn’t need to throw an elbow at the head of an opponent, but he did anyway. Higuita didn’t need to leave his own — and his team’s — fate to be decided by referee JC Rivero, but he did anyway.

64′ — Acosta times his run and finishes at the back post — It was close — like, really close — but Acosta is probably, based upon the best angles available for viewing, onside. The ball from Yamil Asad couldn’t have been played better.

71′ — Dwyer times his run, lifts it over Ousted — Speaking of timing runs perfectly, Dwyer did just that in order to stay onside and get on the end of Rosell’s through ball. The finish over top of David Ousted was emphatic.

90’+6 — Rooney saves the day on one end, wins it on the other — Do you still think Rooney is in MLS just to collect a large paycheck without putting in much effort? Watch his game-saving tackle, followed by the pinpoint diagonal ball from 50 yards, then answer that question.

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Man of the match: Luciano Acosta

Goalscorers: Acosta (45’+4, 64, 90+6′), Ousted (50′ – OG), Dwyer (71′)

Orlando come back twice to steal 3-3 draw with Revs

Photo credit: Orlando City SC / @OrlandoCitySC
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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Scott Sutter finished Yoshimar Yotun’s free kick in the 93rd minute in give Orlando City a 3-3 tie with the New England Revolution on Saturday night, with each team snapping a three-game losing streak.

[ MORE: Atlanta, TFC each blow a lead, settle for testy 2-2 draw ]

Yotun also had a free kick in the 71st minute that Amro Tarek headed home to make it 2-all for Orlando (7-14-2). Yotun was sent off violent conduct in the eighth minute of second-half stoppage time.

Teal Bunbury gave the Revs (7-7-8) a 3-2 lead in the 76th minute after entering as a substitute in the 74th. He found some space in the right side of the area before slotting it past goalkeeper Earl Edwards Jr.

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Juan Agudelo opened the scoring for New England in the seventh minute with a header flick to finish Brandon Bye’s throw-in from a narrow angle. Cristian Penilla drilled home a right-footed shot in the 18th minute after Luis Caicedo forced a defensive miscue in the Orlando City backfield.

Dom Dwyer pulled Orlando City to 2-1, finishing Tony Rocha’s cross from close range in the 45th minute.

Report: Orlando’s Justin Meram could be traded back to Columbus

Stephen M. Dowell/Orlando Sentinel via AP
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A former Columbus Crew midfielder could be on his way back to the Eastern Conference side.

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Several reports have suggested that Orlando City’s Justin Meram could be on his way back to Columbus, as the Lions look to trade the midfielder back to the club that drafted the 29-year-old.

The veteran attacker joined the Lions back in January in a trade after spending seven seasons with the Crew.

Reliable Twitter account MLS Transfers first reported the story on Sunday, also naming the Portland Timbers, Vancouver Whitecaps and FC Cincinnati as potential landing spots for Meram.

Meram was traded to Orlando back in January after requesting a move away from Columbus due to ongoing talks of the club being relocated out of Ohio.

The Iraq international has struggled in his first season with Orlando, scoring just one goal in 17 appearances for the club — who currently sit in ninth place and six points outside of the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Report: Orlando pursuing Scolari to become club’s third manager

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Orlando City was out to a hot start in 2018, before six straight defeats cost Jason Kreis his job with the Eastern Conference side.

[ MORE: Landon Donovan talks El Tri support, USMNT and much more ]

The Lions must now turn to a third manager in their fourth MLS season, following the departure of the veteran head coach.

ESPN’s Taylor Twellman reported on Saturday that the Lions are prepared to turn to a Brazilian, and specifically have an eye on former Brazil manager Luis Felipe Scolari.

The 69-year-old is currently out of coaching, after last holding a position in the Chinese Super League with Guangzhou Evergrande in 2017.

Scolari guided Evergrande to three straight league titles in the Chinese first division, however, opted not to renew his contract.

Orlando remains sixth in the East through 15 matches, however, the club has begun to lose ground on the conference’s top five teams after their dip in form.

Orlando City parts ways with Jason Kreis

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Jason Kreis has been fired by Orlando City SC, and Bobby Murphy will take control of the team while it undergoes a coaching search.

The former USMNT player led Real Salt Lake from 2007-13, but has struggled with expansion sides New York City SC and now OCSC.

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Orlando is in the Eastern Conference’s sixth spot with a 6W-8L-1T record, and had won just 21 of its 64 games under Kreis. From OrlandoCitySC.com:

“This is a very difficult decision to take, but sometimes in sports we must make tough decisions with the best future of the organization in mind,” Orlando City SC CEO Alex Leitão said. “I have enormous respect for Jason and the work his team did in Orlando. He arrived in a difficult moment and is leaving with a legacy of respect and professionalism. Now is the time to look forward, keep our heads high and continue pushing toward the many goals we set this season.”